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On this day in Lewis & Clark history...

Chief Black Cat visits Lewis at Fort Mandan while Clark is hunting several miles to the south. The chief and his wife bring Lewis a shield and 2 pairs of moccasins. They all dine together.

I saw Several old Villages near the Chisscheta River    on enquirey found they were Mandan Villages destroyed by the Sous & Small Pox, they noumerous and lived in 6 Villages near that place.

William Clark

Empty Mandan lodge

Interior of a Mandan Lodge without any furnishings

Photo taken with permission at Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site, U.S. National Park Service.

visited by the black-Cat the principal chief of the Roop-tar-he, or upper mandane vilage. this man possesses more integrety, firmness, inteligence and perspicuety of mind than any indian I have met with in this quarter, and I think with a little management he may be made a usefull agent in furthering the views of our government.

Meriwether Lewis

Matò-Tòpe, Mandan Chief

Historic painting of a Mandan chief

Painting by Karl Bodmer circa 1832.

The black Cat presented me with a bow and apologized for not having completed the shield he had promised alledging that the weather had been too could to permit his making it, I gave him som small shot 6 fishing-hooks and 2 yards of ribbon

Meriwether Lewis

Sioux bow and arrow

Historic painting of a bow and arrow

Painting by Karl Bodmer circa 1832.

the Black & white & Speckled woodpecker has returned—

Clark or Lewis

Yellow-bellied sapsucker, Sphyrapicus varius

Woodpecker with a black and white body with red on the head perched on the side of the tree

Photo ©2008 Dominic Sherony. Permission via the Creative Commons 2.0 License.